Cowboys and Theology

You know, when you are a True Blue, Die Hard Cowboy Fan, most of the people around you just don’t seem to get it.  Those folks may support their own team, or they may even be a nominal supporter of the Cowboys, but they think your love for the team is so fanatical that it borders on being some type of mental disorder.

I have been a Cowboy fan for 35 years.  I picked the Boys as my team when I was around 5 years old.  Admittedly, I didn’t know much about football at the time but something about the Cowboys grabbed my attention.  This is made all the more interesting by the fact that no one in my family really cared about football.  I got into watching the Cowboys, and being an only child, I got my way on Sundays and was able to turn the dial to the Cowboys game.

So, I really don’t know why I became a Cowboy fan here in my home state so far away.  We didn’t have the Panthers then.  The only way I can explain my love for the Cowboys is by good old Calvinistic theology.  I think I was predestined to be a Cowboy fan.  You know – many are called, but few are chosen.  I guess I am blessed to be one of the elect.  If you’re not one of the chosen, you just won’t get it.

It was so exciting to watch them play and win.  It was devastating to see them lose. I can’t tell you how many times I cried over a Cowboy loss as a small child.  My father would look at me, shake his head, and remind me that it was only a game, but to me it seemed like so much more than that.

Over the years, as the family watched one Dallas game after another, I began to notice my father getting into it more and more. He was pretty calm during Superbowl XII when we beat the Broncos.  He was reserved during Superbowl XIII when we lost a close one to the Steelers. Me? I cried of course. But as the years went on, his interest in each game seemed to grow until in 1992, we watched Superbowl XXVII together. The Boys were awesome as they destroyed the Bills that day.  The outcome was really never in doubt. I was tearing the house down in excitement. There were great moments during that game when I looked over at my dad and, I swear to you, I could see a tear or two gleaming in his eyes. I knew at that point – he gets it. 

My dad saw the Cowboys repeat in 1993 as the Cowboys once again beat the Bills in Superbowl XXVIII.  In May of 1994, he left us due to a heart attack.  I still miss watching the games with him. 

I think it was D.D. Lewis who first said that they left a hole in the roof of Texas Stadium so God could look down and watch His team play football.  That statement by Lewis puts a thought in my head.  I know you never met my dad but see if you can picture this scene with me…….

It’s a Sunday afternoon, and my dad’s up there in heaven looking down through that hole in Texas Stadium. He’s got a comfortable chair, he’s wearing a jersey with number 81 on it, and there’s a bowl of fresh buttered popcorn beside him. To the other side of the popcorn, there’s another person watching the game as well – but you can’t make out who it is just yet.  The Cowboys are doing well this day and they just score another touchdown.  A vaguely familiar voice says to my dad, “I’m glad we had our popcorn ready.”  Dad smiles and turns his head toward the unknown man with the familiar voice.  For the first time I catch a glimpse of Dad’s companion.  He’s wearing a smartly tailored suit with a fedora on his head to top off the look.

As dad faces his friend he says, “You know Tom, I think they’re about to do it again.”

Now, if you’re not a die hard fan, you might think that’s a crazy idea I have. It’s ok if you don’t get it.  It’s a Cowboy thing.  Only the elect will understand.  The Cowboy fans who are among the chosen, agree with D.D. Lewis – there is football in heaven, and the heavenly fans are all decked out in blue and silver – with one exception.  There’s always that one guy watching the game in his smartly tailored suit and fedora.  Most of the time he looks quite stoic, but every now and then, if you look close, you will see just the slightest grin….
 

Contributed by Richard Isaacs

 

Comments
  1. Ok I will try to respond to this with big alligator tears in my eyes. How beautiful this story was. I can’t tell you how much it touched me but I can just say how much I relate in that I have a couple of loved ones that have passed that I could picture sitting there as well.
    I share with you that it is so hard to explain the feeling and the heart of a true Cowboys fan. If you are one, you get it, if you aren’t, you smirk at it.
    Everyone that knows me here at this blog for any amount of time knows how emotional I am about My Cowboys. I don’t think I have ever been able to express it the way you just did. I sure appreciate that you were able to and furthermore, I am thrilled to hear that I have a co-writer here at lonestarstruck.com that shares that deep down love for this team with me.
    Thank you so much for this writing. I have to go blow my nose now.

  2. Kelly

    I think some of us are just born Cowboys fans! ;)

  3. raina

    Great article! I almost teared up because I pictured my Dad sitting with your Dad and Grandpa Landry (thats what I have always called him w/respect).

  4. That what a great story. I know that you are right about some people being born Cowboy’s fans. My dad, was born a fan. My grandparents have told me storys about when he was little hollering, throwing things, and crying his eyes out infront of the TV durning the Cowboy’s games. I took him to his first game Nov. 29th of this year against the Packers and I have never seen a grown man act as much like a little kid as he did. He came down and watched the playoff game with me, and as he sat there with a tears in his eyes at the end I could see that little kid my grandparents have told me about. I just wanted to share that with the best group of writers and fans that I have ever seen. As a die hard Cowboy’s fan myself I would like to thank all of ya’ll for the information and feeling everyone puts into there storys. Thank ya’ll!

  5. What a great way to make an introduction! Nice blog! I always love these introspective pieces.

  6. Skipper 11

    That was unbelievable reading my fellow Cowboy fan. Great job

  7. ~lin

    I remember the first time I went to see a COWBOY game at Texas Stadium…I didn’t know what you could or couldn’t bring to a game and so I brought everything…pompoms, signs, and a gigantic COWBOY flag and flagpole….I went with 3 other friends, and they love the COWBOYS, but not as much as me. We parked so far away from the stadium that they were fussing at carrying their signs and things that I didn’t care if it was a 20 mile walk, I was not stoppin’ for anything. All I knew was that I was watching MY BOYS “Live” for the first time against THE PACKERS. I grabbed all of the things they were carrying along with my things, and headed for the stadium. When I finally got to the doors and proceeded to section 122…all I could think about was: “WOW, My life is now complete!” A sense of awe came over me and only a true fan can relate. I quickly had my friend take a picture of me waving and behind me was the field I have admired since I was a little girl. There’s just something about that “STAR” in the middle of that field. I admire and share the same sentiment with you, Richard, completely and wholeheartedly. Thanks to all of you who make it possible for me as a DIE HARD FAN feel welcomed and part of a great family…COWBOYS 4EVER! Amen. ~lin
    PS: Richard, thanks for the lump in my throat.

  8. Fredooch

    Great article and welcome aboard! I get teased alot by my friends cause I am such a fanatic and I live in Texas!!! Imagine that!

  9. Great blog! I became a Cowboy fan when I was 8, and I have been one ever since. My entire family loves the Cowboys. But with my son and I its something ‘different’. Since last week, I haven’t felt the same. I won’t be watching football until next year. Its just to painful. I will be waiting for the first game anxiously.

  10. SHANE

    AWESOME BLOG! I HAVE THAT SAME FREAKIN FEELING. WHAT REALLY GOT MY ATTENTION WHEN I WAS A KID WAS SEEING THE STAR ON THE HELMET! I WAS SOOOOO HOOKED FROM THERE ON.

  11. Raina

    I have been to Texas Stadium one time in 1983. I was so nervous as I entered the stadium and then I saw the field, that field that had been in my living room for as long as I can remember. Then a tear fell. The game was close all the way to end.You know that type of game that gives a heart attack! WE WON! I bawled like a baby! I was with a tour and everyone was hugging me trying to take care of me. BEST trip I ever had!!!!!!!!!

  12. Jon

    I’ve been a fan since I was about6 or 7. I did’nt quite understand it all but I knew they were something special. I havent missed a game since and im totally serious. 33 years of watching or listening and now im in Rams territory I don’t get all of them but thank goodness for the internet. Thanks for the blog and yes it brought chills and a tear or two!! I’m 40 now and I cried just as much when we lost that fateful Sunday as I did when we lost the Steelers so many years ago. I will never stop being a fan win or loose! It just something I can’t help… I bleed Silver and Blue! Oh yeah, one more thing, HOW BOUT THEM COWBOYS!!!!!!

  13. Big.J.74

    I understand. I was born to be a cowboys fan. To love them through the great and the not so good and the down right ugly times. I became a cowboys fan back in 78-79 I was 4-5 years of age. I would watch football with my grandpa. He was a die hard Packer fan and would tease me about likeing a team becuse of the helmet. That star ment so much to me. I spent a many Monday night listing to the radio and cheering on MY STAR! MY TEAM! MY COWBOYS! I still remember the feeling I had under my sheets listing to AL,Frank and Dan saying Hershall Walker was coming in to replace Tony Dorsett! I was so pissed at the time. And the times I would sneek half-way down the stairs to watch the game off a refection off the front door window. We lost that game to the Sants and a Mortin Anderson Field goal 52 yards I think? I LOVE MY STAR! I LOVE MY TEAM! I LOVE MY COWBOYS!!

  14. Melissa

    All I can say right now is…
    WOW
    All of my feelings written down for me.
    Thank You

  15. I think we could work something out about doing a reciprocal link. I like what I read…Writers are “writers”, including sports; BTW I did mention JOURNALISTS in the post I made!
    I don’t know what more to tell you about the “deal” other whan what I’ve already said and what you can find in the sites I referenced.
    Let me know if you might be interested. I am.
    Richard
    rdk1421@hotmail.com
    (WRITERS WANTED in subject line, please…).